Monday, July 28, 2014

2 Down...10 to go!! (7/28/14)

Hola hola from Avellaneda! Today is the first day of the 3rd transfer, 10 more to go! This morning I got to thinking of how fast these 6 weeks have gone! I only do this 10 more times and I am home! 

This week has been a great one! Thanks for all the emails, what exciting news! Tara and Teri had their babies, Rivka is home, Parker is going swimming in Cambodia, Bosty is 2, and Nena is the newest Rattlesnake Hunter! haha it is so great to hear from you all! I cant believe that Riv is home, I feel like she just left. Before we know it, that will be me!

Last week I talked about my wonderful investigators who arent progressing! Well, they still arent progressing. We have one, Raul, who KNOWS everything is true but is doing nothing. Its so frustrating. We said that if he doesnt come to Church this week we are going to stop teaching him. We had 3 wonderful lessons with him this week. The spirit was so strong! We explained the importance of attending church and guess what, he didnt show. So this week we get to have a ¨Charla Franka¨ and tell him that we are not going to teach him anymore. I told Hermana Rodas that this is when I am going to pretend to not speak spanish haha. 

Our other investigator, is very very self centered and thinks that her life is awful. We visit a lot of people, people who literally live in huts and this woman lives in a gigantic house with heat and plenty of food but she complains that she doesnt have a job. (Shes never even looked for one!) Its difficult for me to teach and love her! haha but this week we decided to read About Nefi and how his family was commanded to leave all they had in Jerusalem and go into the wilderness. I asked her, how would you feel if God commanded you to leave all you have? Because my question forming in spanish is TERRIBLE I accidently said a command. Leave all you have! haha she looked so confused and was like seriously? haha then Hermana Rodas explained what I meant! I dont know what I would do without her! lol but anyway, we decided this week to focus on our blessings. So we are having her count 5 blessings each night. She said, I dont know if I can do that. I dont think I get 5 blessings each day! and we were like no, you get WAYY more than 5! We are doing it too and it is wonderful! 

We taught a Less active, Teressa. She doesnt have any teeth and doesnt open her mouth when she talks. I didnt understand a word that she said. It was horrible. But, all of a sudden I felt impressed to talk about the power of prayer. So I did. Sentences came to my head and I said them. I dont know how she replied, but I said what I was impressed to say. She started to cry and was truly touched. Hermana Rodas taught her to pray and she said her first prayer since her baptism 8 years ago. It was a moment that I will never forget. I didnt need to understand what she said. I had the spirit and I was able to be an instrument in the hands of God to help her. The gift of tongues is real! 

Also, Family Abachinos didnt go to church again! We were sooo distressed on how to help. We prayed for a way for her to understand. We had a wonderful lesson with her, but it did nothing. The next time we went back, she told us how one night she felt impressed to ask god if she needed to change anything in her life. She recieved an answer to go to church. It was an answer to our prayers! The words we were saying just werent enough. The spirit is the best teacher!!

This week I had my first intercambio! I left the arms of my trainer and went to Quilmes with Hermana Tobar. She is from Chile. All I was told is that my companion was from Chile. Chile does everything fast. Talks fast, walks fast, eats fast! So I was a nervous wreak! But, I jumped off the train and met her and she was wonderful! For intercambios you are with them for 24 hours and then go back with your companion. I understood her perfectly and had no problem communicating with her! We taught 3 lessons and I talked just as much as she did. Afterwards she told me how impressed she was with my spanish and my ability to communicate with these people. She told me how blessed I was to recieve the gift of tongues so fast. This was so humbling for me. I never realized but I sincerely am so blessed with this language. I have SO far to go but I am so blessed. Our last lesson was with a family and the daughter was watching frozen when we walked in. Do you wanna build a snowman was playing and I immedietly got tears in my eyes. I rememebered my last night having a sister sleepover with Sayge and Shaylee and the song made me miss them! But, i got refocused and was just fine! Another thing was that Hermana Tobar forgot to mention that their area was mostly Villas (the hood, GHETTO!) I never have walked so fast in my life. I was scared to death! But, I was just fine. I cannot express just how humble some of these people live. It is mind blowing. 

Now for the hilarious part of the intercambio. In the morning, we woke up at 6:30 and I went to the bathroom. Everything was normal! The bathroom and the bedroom are in one part of the pension adn then the living room is in another part. I shut the door to the bathroom and bedroom area and did my exercise. 30 minutes later, open the door, and I had flooded the WHOLE APARTMENT! Covered all of my foot! Hermana Tobar asked me if I put toilet paper in the toilet and I said yes and she told me how I am never to do that again in Argentina. Everything in the bedroom and bathroom was SOAKED! It was AWFUL!!! But then we cleaned it all up and I was so close to tears but it all worked out! now its hilarious! haha

Grammatical error of the week:
Trying to say Where is my backpack and I said Where is my blood sausage! haha

I got letters on Saturday!! THANK YOU MOM SHAY SAYGE GRANDMA BOSTYN AND The missionaries!! 

This week I had to use my rainboots a lot and my foot is broken I am pretty sure. For about a week it has been in awful pain! I am just waiting for it to wear off! I am walking so cute! we walk around 15 miles a day so now is not the time to have a broken foot! My stomach is also reeping the joys of Argentina! I just keep praying I dont get worms! I might have them though! The joys of foreign lands!!

Today we are going to Walmart!! I am going to blow 50 pesos on one tiny jar of peanut butter and have no regrets! 

I love you all and hope you have a wonderful week! 
FAVOR! Anyone that wants to send me Church (EFY) music on a USB drive, PLEASE DO IT! 

Te amo muchisimo! 
Chau chau! 
Hermana Root 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Week 11 - Bien Vida! (7/21/14)

Hola hola! Another week down! This week was one to remember. It was difficult but I learned so much! I cannot believe that Riv comes home this week and that Parker is in Cambodia!! AHH! 

Well GOOD NEWS! Hermana Rodas told me that I am talking in my sleep... IN SPANISH!!! When she told me this I was so happy! They say thats a step in becoming fluent! Haha I still have so far to go till I am fluent but Its a step!

This week I felt a lot of sadness. We have a lot of investigators that honestly do not want to do ANYTHING. We have this investigator , Raul. He is great. He has a STRONG testimony and KNOWS that this is the truth. He always says how he wants to follow Christ. We have had two baptism dates for him, and he wont come to church so it is impossible to baptize him. One day in a lesson with him I just started to cry because he was just making excuses on why he cant attend or why he cant keep our invitations. It is true that you really start to see these people like God sees them.

We have a less active family, Family Abachino. They are great and they too have such strong testimonies. The are having a hard time with tithing. The struggle finacially and it is hard for them to pay tithing. One day we were teaching them about the importance of tithing. It was so hard. Sitting in their humble home, that we would consider to be a tin shack, telling these people that they need to pay tithing. It was honestly so hard. I just thought about how never in my life have I went without anything, and these people barely have food. We shared the scripture about how if we pay our tithing the windows of heaven will be opened up and they will recieve the blessings they need. Then Hermana Rodas shared that growing up, her parents have been seperated. She has 3 siblings and that most of the time, her family had no money. Her mother would always pay her tithing in the beginning of the month and by the end, they would have to walk miles to church because they didnt have money for the bus, or they would not be able to do things. But, she testified that they always had enough. They always had food that they needed and God always blessed them. After this, they still would not commit to pay tithing. We left feeling devastated. We then went back another day and they committed to come to church. Well, they didnt come to church. We went to their house yesterday, and they didnt have a reason. It is so hard. I can see that if they would just do these things, they will get the blessings they need! But they dont see it. It really got to me this week and I just felt sad for these people.

Another hard thing, we had a meeting with our Ward. They only have ward council once a month here and we were told that we have 802 people in our ward, yes 802. But, only 58 come. I felt like the worst missionary in the world! It is so hard because most of the people dont live in our boundaries because it is dangerous so we cant visit the less active. We just want to help this ward but we are not sure how. This isnt the United States. Wards are so different. I see how AMAZING the burns ward is. 

One day we walked ALL day and toca todo puertas (knocked on all doors) and no one answered. I was exhausted, but Hermana Rodas and I changed the words to Do you wanna build a snowman to We just wanna share a message, Just open up your door, We know you say that you have no time, but thats a lie, WE KNOW THE TRUTH. haha it was hilarious we sang it all day. 

So, I am straight up teaching a Jehovahs witness. It is so insane. His name is pedro and he is crazy. haha He prayed for us when we asked him to say the closing prayer, ¨Por Favor bendece esta Hermanitas que ellas pueden encontrar la verdad.¨Please bless these Hermanas that they can find the truth. hahah I started to laugh! lol 

I taught my first ENGLISH CLASS! They all wanted me to start with a prayer, in english. AND I COULDNT DO IT! I said SOO many words in spanish! It was so hard. But then I taught the class. We went over numbers, the alphabet, common phrases and it was great. 

For all the future missionaries, they arent joking when they say learn how to lead music. I dont know how and I have to all the time!! I make a FOOL of my self all the time! 

The other day it was raining and so I wore my raincoat and rainboots and I was ready! We had a district meeting this day and everyone told me that I look like Dora, so that is my new nickname, Dora the Explorer!

We have decided, Hermana Rodas and I, that our future husbands are praying for us to learn how to cook. That is why we never have lunch! haha 

All is great, all of these hard things are for a reason and at the end of the day, I wouldnt change this experience for anything. I am growing so much and this is just what I need. 

I am so glad that the cows sold, (your welcome for the blessings), I am so glad Sayge had a WONDERFUL time at Girls Camp, that Bay is doing good, that Haying Season is going well! And that Mom and Shay survived the MOUSE in the house! haha

I love you all so much! I miss you more than anything but this week I am ending my first transfer! After this, only 10 more 6 weeks! 

Love you to the moon and back, 

Hermana Root 

Hermana Rodas and I with our alfajors, AKA best treat ever! This was the day I was dora
- Avellanedas motto is Bien Vida
- The day no one opened the door, we were in an alley tracting. This is what the houses are like.
-Hermana Rodas and I 
- Hermana and I after our English Class

Monday, July 14, 2014

One Month in Argentina! (7/14/14)

Another week down!! Wow, it is already Monday! I have been in Avellaneda for one month! Time is flying. Well, Argentina didn't win the world cup! THEY WERE SOOO CLOSE! haha it has been the craziest week here. We all had to go to our pensions at 4 yesterday for the final game because it was too dangerous to be in the streets. People are insane. Never in my life have I seen anything like this. Everyone has so much pride for Argentina! I have a video, I will attach it. I thought that Argentina won because everyone was going crazy but they didn't, they lost and everyone still went insane! 

This week was a week of progress! We have this investigator, Raul. He is the one that I committed to baptism in my first lesson. He is great. But, this week he told us he didn't want to get baptized yet and needed time because his family is against it. It was the most heartbreaking thing. I just wanted him to accept the gospel so badly, but everyone has their agency. It was really hard on Hermana Rodas and I though. He has such a strong testimony and just denied it. I don't understand.

We have another investigator that is... difficult. Imagine the most difficult person in your life, that is this woman. She talks, and talks, and talks and says nothing at all! So, I always cut her off haha so I don't think she likes me that well. She has tremendous faith, but she doesn't like to act. She is breaking the law of chastity and the word of wisdom and we have talked about it and she refuses to admit that she is wrong. I don't know, she is not progressing and has been taught for almost a year. So I was prompted to bring up baptism. I shared our purpose and how our job is not only to talk with people, but to help them enter in to covenants to come closer to God. I asked her how she felt about baptism and she freaked out! She said how we only wanted her to be baptized and how we didn't care about her. It was awful! We were being so kind and not rude at all but she is just difficult. So I explained how she has her agency and how important baptism is and how when she feels ready its a wonderful thing. But we ended that lesson and literally RAN out the door! haha 

Also we taught a less active, Mariana. She is great. She is about 50 and has two little girls one of them is about to turn 8 so she asked us to teach her because she wants her to be baptized. So one day Mariana was sick so we were at her house doing service for her and her nephew needed a blessing because he was SO sick. He is only 7 months old and was horribly sick. Hermana Rodas was talking with Mariana and I started to talk to Mia. I taught her how to pray. Usually she doesn't understand me but she understood EVERY word I said. After I asked her if she wanted to pray and she said yes. I got to witness this 7 year old girl say her first prayer to heavenly father. It was the most amazing thing. Her mom was so touched. After, I just felt the spirit so strong. God gave me the ability to communicate with her and share the gospel. After the elders gave the baby a blessing and literally DIRECTLY after, he was smiling and laughing! So many miracles happened in that house that day! 

We had a temple trip this week in our ward and the rule is that you have to have 2 investigators to go! So we invited EVERYONE! and the elders couldn't go so they gave us their investigators too. All in all we had 8 that committed to go! We were SOO happy! We went to the church at 8:30 and not ONE showed up. Everyone here is ¨sick¨ in the mornings. No one likes to wake up! So we didn't get to go :( it was devastating! 

This week we had an AWFUL rain storm. We were out and invited Bianca, a girl who wants to serve a mission, to come with us for the afternoon. It was raining so hard. Of course that day I was wearing my CROCS! Argentina does not have a very good draining system so I got to walk in knee high, NASTY! water in crocs, tights, and a maxi dress for 5 hours. It was hands down the best day of my life! haha I was just thinking about all the germs I was walking in but, we were laughing and having so much fun. I have learned here that you can actually make any situation a good one! 

This week Hermana Abachino taught us how to make Torta Fritas! It is kind of like an Indian Taco and you put honey on them. They are to die for! I love the food here! I am starting to love everything about this place! 

I sent my first texts in Spanish this week! haha its a big step! Its so hard! Also, we ate lunch with the bishop yesterday and he lives in the Villa which is the hood, or the sketchy part of town. He had to drive us because we aren't allowed there. Wow, I have never seen such ghetto in my life. I am SO thankful for my house, for America, for all I have! 

This week was another big adventure and I am ready for the next! I love you all and will talk to you soon! 

Con amor, 
Chau chau! 
Hermana Root

Monday, July 7, 2014

Two Months Down! (7/7/14)

Hola Hola! Guess what day it is, MY 2 MONTH MARK! 16 more to go! When I think about the growth I have seen in these two months I am blown away. I am still the exact same person, but I have learned A LOT of a new language, realize more of who I am, but have seen mostly who I can become. 

This week was great! Last p'day I got the wonderful news that we get to watch a movie once a month!! Of course it has to be Disney but I was SOO excited. So my district came to the church and we watched Rise of the Guardians. It has Santa in it and it is so fitting, BECAUSE ITS FREEZING cold and I think it is Christmas everyday! 

We always have our wonderful adventure to Carrefour (like safeway) every Monday. It is LOCO! But, they play american music! It is go great to hear words that I understand. Hermana and I sing and it is so funny because she knows the words but has no idea what they mean! Shes awesome. This week we started doing language study where she helps me for 30 minutes in Spanish, and I help her for 30 minutes in English. It actually has helped so much! So much, that the Elders in my district volunteered me to teach English for Avellaneda! I don't know how many people will show up but I am so nervous! I know English, but its the explaining in Spanish that terrifies me! haha but oh well!

I have found my new favorite food! Because there is no peanut butter here I am going through withdrawals! We had lunch at Family Beobides house and she gave us Dulce de Leche with bananas. OH MY GOSH. It is amazing! It is probably so bad for me but, I cant read the food label so I have NO idea and I am not going to try and translate! haha 

Argentina had two games this week in the world cup. Oh my word! When they win or score a goal, it is like they whole country just won their Independence! Every car on the road honks for HOURS! They have so much pride in their country! 

We have these two investigators, Abel y Silvia! They are about 60 and have 12 kids (AHH!) But, Abel doesn't have a leg. We got to teach him about the plan of salvation. We got to the part about resurrection and read a scripture about how your body will be perfect and he got tears in his eyes and looked at us and asked if he would have his leg. I got to say yes and testify that his body would be perfect. He had so much joy! He committed to be baptized!!! And then we found out that he wasn't married to Silvia, so no date yet. But , we are working on it! 

I got to teach about the plan of salvation again with a less active sister, Hermana Flor. She is awesome! I love her so much. I bore my testimony about how I know how hard it is to keep all the commandments but a thing that helps me is thinking about spending forever with my family. I shared that that is the reason I am serving a mission. Because I get to spend forever with my family, I want others to have the same privilege. She has a little boy named Pedro and she had tears in her eyes and shared how all she wants is to spend eternity with her son. She had such a change in desires and that is what all people need. You can't change until you have a desire to change. 

One night we were teaching an investigator in a Kiosco (a little baby store) this woman walked into the store and knew the owner. We started talking to her. Her name is Gracillia and she has such a hard life. She lives in the villa (it is equal to the hood) She needed a transplant but she doesn't have an address so every time a kidney was available, she could never get it. Her house isn't even a house and she is freezing every night. She has no money for food and her children are always getting in fights with gangs. It was heartbreaking to hear all of this. We testified of how we knew that Christ knew exactly how she felt. We gave her a book of Mormon and she said she would read it. We cant teach her because we aren't allowed in that area and neither are the elders so we are trying to find a way for her to come to the church and teach her. That night was very humbling. It was so cold. Hermana Rodas and I got back to the pension and we had a our baby stove and our hot chocolate and I went to say my prayers and just cried because I have so much. There are so many people that have nothing, nothing at all. Before coming here, I didn't think this was possible. It was the night before 4th of July and this fourth of July I really realized how much me have living in the US. I never wanna leave the US again after this. It is such a remarkable country. 

I sure felt the affects of missionary life this week. Because I have my shoulder bag, one of the bones in my lower back is not in place! It is an awful pain but, hey its part of the call! I have been wearing my BYU Hawaii sweatshirt under my clothes each day because it is so cold. Hermana Rodas and I bought hats and gloves and scarves because we were just SOO cold!!

We had a mix up with our debit cards and we needed to pay our rent. The secretary´s name is Hermano Dance and he is from the US. He doesn't speak Spanish well so I told Hermana Rodas I would talk to him on the phone. I called and I struggled for words! It was hard for me to speak my own language!! I am starting to think a lot in Spanish. I am just amazed at all that I have learned and applied over these 2 months. 

Last night we went to visit the people who didn't make it to church on Sunday and we went to Family Abachino´s house. We were talking with them and the Hermana Abachino just started to cry and she said how she knows that Christ lives. She told us a story about how one time she committed to feed the missionaries but she didn't have money to buy food. She had a little bit of rice though so she put that in a pan and went to go do something else. When she came back, the pan was FULL of rice. It was so amazing hearing her testify of Christ. This Wednesday we have a temple trip and we committed her daughters to go. The family is not sealed in the temple and we committed them to work on that and make it a goal. I hope I am here for when it happens! 

I read the letter I received from Skye this week and it really helped me. I think of my family and friends everyday but it is starting to be more constructive everyday. It is almost motivating. I want to come back and have no regrets about this time I have spent here. I am working so hard and giving it all I have and I just cant wait to come home and remember this time forever, because it is changing me. 

Thanks for all you do, all your prayers, and examples! 
Te amo mucho mucho!

Chau Chau! 

Hermana Root